Will Blog For Food
We’ve established and train, that the most crucial step to “finding your blogging voice” is by focusing on core categories and delivering regular content to your audience. That strict approach leaves no room for ‘Blogging Big Picture’ essays if your audience is expecting content about the [your town here] real estate market.
It’s a shame if you have a great understanding that you can’t contain and have no appropriate soapbox to express it. The Real Estate Tomato is that soapbox; a destination to shape knowledge and discussion about the real estate blogging big picture itself.
Our Vine is growing quickly with real estate bloggers that need to share their understanding of how to approach the blogging as marketing effort. For them it seems therapeutic, for us, it’s both a blessing and an honor.
Today we are thrilled to slide the Tomato Soapbox over to Jonathan Greene.
What has impressed me most about Jonathan, and the exact reason why I gladly agreed to let him write for us, is his unmistakable tone. When he writes, I hear him; it’s not subtle. Refreshing? Certainly. On topic? Spot On! We hope we can keep him distracted from his Local Focus, at least once in a while, to grace our pages with his wit and counsel.
Will Blog For Food
by Jonathan Greene
I’ve heard much debate recently about “Localism.” Is it a trend as some suggest? Or, is it a manifestation of a return to the origin of Real Estate Blogging as John Lockwood recently proposed? Either way, it’s a topic of much discussion. As is the case with answering most questions, it’s best to start at the beginning.
Localism: According to Wikipedia, is a tendency of local groups (cultures, nations, communities) to be narrow in their world view, and dismissive of concepts which emphasize broader concepts of community.
I read that twice, and then had my wife explain it to me. I think it’s a short climb up the ladder of logic to adapt that definition to our purposes and say that “Localism, as it pertains to Real Estate Blogging, is a movement to monopolize search engine generated web traffic related to a specific geographic region by publishing locally focused articles on one’s blog.”
So now we know what it is. But hell, all we really want to know is if it works!
I recently cashed my first escrow check that came as a direct result of my blogging efforts, so I have 6000 reasons to think that it does work. The obvious implication is that I am no expert in the subject because this was my FIRST check from blogging. I’m sure that some of the gurus have had many more and may be better qualified to expound upon the subtleties of localism, but I’ll give it a shot anyway. Let me tell you how I stumbled upon a deal from blogging about Tampa Real Estate:
I wrote keyword-rich articles about Tampa Real Estate….and I got clobbered. It seems that nobody told me there were 20,000 Realtors in Tampa with websites optimized to monopolize searches for keywords such as “Tampa Realtor” or Tampa Real Estate.” After several weeks of no related web traffic, I went back to the drawing board.
I thought about my target audience. If I were searching for a house online, what would I type? Would I just type “Tampa Real Estate?” Probably. But then, I’d be overwhelmed by the amount of information available. Then what? I would search for that neighborhood down the street with the new houses that I liked when I drove by. What was it called? Oh yes, Asbel Creek.
I wrote about individual neighborhoods. I wrote detailed neighborhood reviews outlining the pros and cons of each neighborhood in my area. I started with Land O Lakes, which is a little suburb of Tampa. Wouldn’t you know, the traffic starts pouring in….ehr….trickling in may be more accurate. But, at least they’re showing up now. So…
I tried to figure out how to get them to contact me. Marketing types call this a “value added proposition.” But, for my purposes, I had to be more subtle than just saying “You should use Team Greene Realty because we friggin rock!” So (big surprise) I wrote more articles. This time, I highlighted some of the more difficult aspects of navigating Real Estate transactions. I wrote about how dealing with builders in Tampa could be difficult, and how using a Realtor could ease that difficulty.
I made myself available to receive the payoff. Internet types have a short attention span. I knew that when, and if, my buyer called my phone I had better answer it. If he emailed me, I had 15 minutes to get back to him before he lost interest. So, I leveraged the latest technology (in this case, my Palm Treo) to make myself available 24/7. When he emailed, I answered immediately in a warm, friendly way. One month later, I cashed my check.
That's my story and I’m sticking to it. Whether or not this strategy will work again, or for how long, is another argument for another day. For now, I’ll retire to my bloggery and attempt to write another post that will be valuable to my Tampa readers.
Thanks Jonathan! It’s great to have you on the Vine.
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